“People who love to eat are always the best people”

– Julia Child

One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”

 – Virginia Woolf

There is no love sincerer than the love of food.”

George Bernard Shaw

“You can’t just eat good food. You’ve got to talk about it too.

And you’ve got to talk about it to somebody who understands that kind of food.”

– Kurt Vonnegut

Behind every successful woman is a substantial amount of coffee.

– Stephanie Piro

FoodeMagdxb

#FillingTheBlues – a third year

If you read any of my social media feeds you will have seen more than a smattering of ‘boys in blue’ this year as I am taking part in a Ramadan initiative organised by Tahir of Moti Roti. The focus of the project is to bring together homegrown food businesses and volunteers, who join together for Ramadan and distribute food and drink to the ‘boys in blue’ the term we use to cover the guys who work tirelessly throughout the year building Dubai literally brick by brick.

Continue reading #FillingTheBlues – a third year

Mouhalabieh oh sweet Mouhalabieh ..

It’s 6pm towards the end of the first week of Ramadan and I’ve just got home from another day of handing out food and drink to the construction guys as part of #FillingTheBlues.   There’s just over an hour and a bit until the end of the fasting period when I can break my fast with dates and water.  I’m fasting for the first time ever in my life and have committed to fasting for the whole of Ramadan, so far it’s going well, aside from feeling thirsty I’m not hungry until all of a sudden and completely out of the blue from absolutely nowhere I start thinking about a sweet dessert that I’ve only had a few times here, but which I am craving … Mouhalabieh.

In typical fashion, when searching for a recipe or inspiration I take to Google where I find a host of recipes, some claiming the dessert is Lebanese, some Syrian and some just a Middle Eastern Dish.  It’s heritage aside, I’ve eaten it out a few times, it’s a fairly staple dessert here and can be glamed up or down depending on where you eat it. Essentially the pudding is made from milk and sugar and thickened with cornflour, flavoured with middle eastern flavourings of rose and orange water and served with crushed nuts on top, usually pistachio but also other dried fruits and nuts can be added too.  A quick dash to the shop for some flavourings and some fresh milk and I’m off to the kitchen to start cooking.

The recipe I followed was the one below (link below – I suspect this is the Lebanese version of the recipe since it’s from a Lebanese company) and I modified it slightly to suit what I had managed to buy in Carrrefore – I couldn’t get rose water or orange blossom water, but managed to buy orange blossom and rose flavourings which worked well – I added 2 teaspoons and this was fine. I substituted half a cup of sugar for 1/4 cup vanilla sugar which I had in the cupboard as a useful way of using up vanilla pods.

Cooking takes about fifteen minutes, then you put the dishes in the fridge to chill and eat later.  What followed was every bit as good as I had imagined. Rich and creamy with a hint of rose and orange in the background and with a nutty crunch of pistachio nuts plus a few extra additions, some dried fruit, some grated coconut and some other nuts, a perfect treat for Suhoor and for breaking my fast the next evening before hitting the gym.

BEST SERVED with a Side of COFFEE :)))))

Ramadan Kareem

DSC_9010

Ingredients

  • 4 cups milk
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp corn flour
  • ¼ cup of water
  • ¼ cup Rose water
  • ¼ cup Orange Blossom Water
  • Pistachios whole, to decorate

Preparation

  • Put milk and sugar in a large pot and whisk until sugar is dissolved.
  • Bring to a boil on medium heat, stirring constantly, about 20mn.
  • Dissolve corn flour in water and add to the boiling milk. Whisk.
  • When the mixture is thick, remove from the heat.
  • Add Rose water and Orange blossom water.
  • Remove from heat. Spoon evenly among serving bowls.
  • Decorate with pistachios. Serve chilled.

PS – sorry for the less than perfect shots this time, I forgot to get a shot in the daytime, and frankly this was eaten up before I could get any more clicks.

Original Recipe >> Here

Continue reading Mouhalabieh oh sweet Mouhalabieh ..

Bestro

In an effort to post more often, I’m reducing the size of my posts so that I can write them more quickly and hopefully share some more of my experiences with you.  So here goes :

I love trying new dining experiences, and stumbled on this one, slightly by accident whilst writing an article for FoodeMagdxb. I love ‘accidental finds’ and sometimes I’m a believer that things happen for a reason – anyway, whilst chatting to Chef Russell at Galeries Lafayette, he mentioned that Chef Adrian had lost a lot of weight by following a 30 day challenge set to him by Chef Hayley Mac from BeStro – essentially Chef Adrian followed a raw, vegan, dairy, gluten and sugar free meal plan which had been set for him by Chef Hayley.  This was a complete U turn in Adrian’s usual eating plans, and resulted in a staggering loss of 14kgs in a month !! Bravo Adrian and Hayley.

Continue reading Bestro

Taking to the Streets : Presidential Style

Getting anywhere in Manila in rush hour traffic is a slow process, cars, lorries, jeepneys, cycles, rickshaws, pedestrians, roadblocks, roadworks etc make for a generally slow but interesting journey.  Imagine then if you had a few police outriders and a police car ahead of you, stopping the traffic and redirecting the traffic around you trying to smooth your way …. just imagine …… well, imagine no more, because this is what happened to a group of journalists, including me, last week!

Our destination, the President’s Palace at Malacañan Palace where we had been invited for a dinner reception as part of Continue reading Taking to the Streets : Presidential Style

Great Chinese Food ! China Town in Manila

Social Media !! Love it or hate it, but it connects people across the globe.  A few weeks ago, just before leaving to fly to the Philippines I sent out a few tweets, the usual kind ‘off to the Philippines, any recommendations on things to do and / or see’ followed by another asking about any good walking tours to do in Manilla as I’m always on the hunt for authentic street food wherever I travel.  A few recommendations were made, but due to my availability I wasn’t able to fit onto one of the standard walking tour itineraries.  Then, out of the blue, along came my ‘knight in shining armour’ or should I say my local volunteer guide in his brothers car, which had windows which were tinted so dark, I was fairly convinced that there were no Street lights in China Town until I rolled down my window!

Continue reading Great Chinese Food ! China Town in Manila

Afternoon Tea at The Palace Downtown Dubai

This is one of those posts, where I hope to tempt you visually into an afternoon tea with a difference.  For a few days each week (Saturday and Wednesday), the tiered platters that we often associate with afternoon tea are stored away, and instead a lavish help yourself afternoon tea spread is set out to be enjoyed in Al Bayt at The Palace, Downtown Dubai.

Start off by selecting your seat in the lounge, a view of the Burj perhaps on the terrace, or indoors with some a/c and the same view and some dappled sunlight, or perhaps a little further back, where you can have some privacy and seclusion when the curtains are pulled across, giving the illusion of having your own private Continue reading Afternoon Tea at The Palace Downtown Dubai

#Commit2Fit

Eeek – I jumped onto the scales today and clearly they are broken !! The number is way too high for my liking, I’m guessing it’s because I’m growing my hair long and haven’t trimmed my finger or toe nails for a while, surely this accounts for all of it ??? …. plus I drank a lot of water and water is heavy right as is all the extra fabric on my dress and the watch, oh the heavy weight watch that I’m Continue reading #Commit2Fit

A coffee loving Brit, writing about Food, Travel & Exercise. Lives in Dubai and loves to travel. Also Travel & Features Editor of FoodeMagDxb www.foodemagdxb.com

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